While big birds are mostly thought about in the context of Sesame Street and ostriches in Africa, there are some truly massive flying birds on this planet. One of the wildest creatures you could ever hope to encounter is known as the harpy eagle. The harpy eagle is the picture of elegance, ferocity, and ultimately, size!
The bird is so large that people say it looks like a man dressed up in cosplay.
As the largest eagle in the world, it is no surprise that it is equally fierce and mysterious as it is large. When seen from the front, the birds look a bit goofy! They have two little tufts of feathers that stick up above their head that give them an almost comical appearance. Things probably wouldn’t seem as comical if it was flying at you, but pictures take the fear out of things.
People seem to love the harpy eagle!
They have seen an uptick in popularity on a few internet sites recently. Bored Panda even says:
Harpy eagles are popular on the internet. For example, one compilation photo of the harpy eagle got over 91,600 upvotes in less than 20 hours on Reddit. While the same picture got more than 120,000 views on Imgur in a similar time-frame.
With their unique features allowing them to be really goofy and fierce at the same time, it’s no surprise people love looking at these wonderful creatures.
Let’s learn about them!
After looking at incredible photos of animals, it always inspires me to look up some stats on them. The harpy eagle is definitely worth the research, especially if you are an animal lover.
Found from Central America to Brazil, the eagle’s habitat is not what it once was.
You can find the harpy eagle from Mexico all the way to the southern point of Brazil. They mostly live in lowland rainforests, making them a unique part of the eagle family. Unfortunately, they have been forced to retreat because much of their former habitat has been deforested or developed by humans.
The harpy eagle is large enough and powerful enough to be on the top of the food chain.
In its natural habitat, only jaguars and ocelots are able to take down a harpy eagle. As a result, the bird is able to prey on pretty much whatever it wants when it comes to mammals. Their primary source of food comes from sloths and monkeys that they catch in the rainforest. Even though is it a massive bird, it has a comparatively short wingspan to help it be a bit more maneuverable through the rainforest.
Check out these talons!
The harpy eagle has the largest talons of all the eagles around, making it quite the predator. They are able to snatch monkeys, sloths, and 100 other prey species right from the trees. You don’t want to get in the way of these things! They are able to lift almost all of their prey while flying.
You may recognize them if you are a Harry Potter fan.
In Harry Potter, Fawkes the Phoenix plays a crucial role in helping to save Harry during a particularly perilous excursion. When designing the bird in CGI, they actually used a model of a harpy eagle as a reference! If you go and compare the two, you can see where they took inspiration.
Harpy eagles are incredible and deserve our attention.
These beautiful creatures are threatened as it stands now. We can all do out part in caring about the place that we all call home.
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